The incidence of deaths in care homes related to COVID-19 has fallen for an eighth consecutive week.
The latest weekly analysis from the Office of National Statistics reveals that care home deaths involving coronavirus decreased by 12.9% in England and Wales to 249.
The number of deaths registered in England and Wales in the week ending 19 June 2020 (Week 25) was 9,339, this was 637 lower than Week 24. The main points of the report are:
- In Week 25, the number of deaths registered was 0.7% below the five-year average (65 deaths fewer), this is the first time weekly deaths have been below the five-year average since Week 11; the number of deaths in care homes and hospitals were also fewer than the five-year average (49 and 782 deaths lower respectively), while the number of deaths at home was 827 higher than the five-year average.
- Of the deaths registered in Week 25, 783 mentioned “novel coronavirus (COVID-19)”, the lowest number of deaths involving COVID-19 in the last 12 weeks; accounting for 8.4% of all deaths in England and Wales.
- In Week 25, the proportion of deaths occurring in care homes decreased to 20.7% while deaths involving COVID-19 as a percentage of all deaths in care homes decreased to 12.9%.
- The number of deaths involving COVID-19 continued to decrease across all English regions, with four of the nine having fewer overall deaths than the five-year average in Week 25.
- In Wales, the total number of deaths was above the five-year average (44 deaths higher) for Week 25 while the number of deaths involving COVID-19 fell to 39 deaths registered (from 57 deaths in Week 24).
- Of all deaths in England and Wales involving COVID-19 registered up to Week 25, 63.5% occurred in hospital with the remainder mainly occurring in care homes (29.7%), private homes (4.6%) and hospices (1.4%).
- The number of deaths registered in the UK in the week ending 19 June 2020 (Week 25) was 10,681, which was similar to the five-year average (8 deaths fewer); of the deaths registered in the UK in Week 25, 849 deaths involved COVID-19.
Gavin Terry, Head of Policy at Alzheimer’s Society said:
‘It’s encouraging to see the coronavirus deaths are continuing to fall but we cannot become complacent when the virus is still very much present.
‘Tragically, people with dementia have been worst hit by this crisis representing over a quarter of all Covid-19 deaths, twice as many people dying at the height of the pandemic compared with previous years.’
‘Each one leaving behind families grieving what potentially could have been a preventable loss of their loved one, had action been taken sooner.
‘With the threat of a second wave and 70% of care home residents living with dementia, the Government’s newly formed Social Care Taskforce must take swift action to protect this vulnerable group to ensure a tragedy like this doesn’t happen again, including guaranteeing safe social contact between people living with dementia and their loved ones.’